Cubs win eighth of nine

SAN DIEGO (AP) -- There was no question Greg Maddux was going to
earn his 309th win.

The Chicago Cubs gave Maddux far more runs than he needed,
embarrassing the San Diego Padres 11-5 on Saturday night, their
eighth win in nine games. Major league batting leader Derrek Lee
had two hits during a seven-run fifth inning.

Even Maddux singled and scored in the big inning, when the first
eight Cubs batters reached base, with the first seven scoring for
an 11-1 lead.

"Nice," Maddux said. "It's one of those, 'not how you pitch,
when you pitch' games. We scored in big innings, man.

"You don't expect something like that, but I'm happy to get it.
Did anybody not get a hit? Everybody was swinging."

Maddux's victory tied him for 19th on the all-time list with
Mickey Welch. Maddux (4-3) allowed three runs and eight hits in six
innings, struck out four and walked one.

Lee went 2-for-5 to raise his average to .380. He was one of six
Cubs with at least two hits. Aramis Ramirez and Jerry Hairston had
three each.

Corey Patterson was the only Cubs regular without a hit and an

The Cubs have at least 10 hits in each of their last eight wins.

"The team is starting to realize what we can do," manager
Dusty Baker said. "We're trying to put some distance on .500, and
just do whatever we can to stay in this race."

Despite the ugly loss, the NL West-leading Padres gained a half
game over Arizona, which dropped a doubleheader at Philadelphia.
The Padres lead the division by a season-high four games.

The Cubs sent 12 batters to the plate in the fifth, had eight
hits, an intentional walk and chased two pitchers.

With the Cubs leading 4-1, Lee opened the inning with a double
to left to chase starter Darrell May (0-1). Brian Falkenborg came
on and allowed the next seven batters to reach base without getting
an out, exiting with the Cubs leading 10-1.

Among the six hits allowed by Falkenborg were Michael Barrett's
bases-loaded ground-rule double, Jeromy Burnitz's RBI double and
RBI singles by Jason Dubois, Maddux and Hairston.

Dennys Reyes came on and struck out Neifi Perez for the first
out, allowed Lee's RBI single to make it 11-1, then retired Ramirez
and Dubois.

"The big inning killed us," manager Bruce Bochy said. "We
just couldn't get an out there. Falkenborg has been throwing well
but couldn't get an out. This is one that we just let it get away.
We'll put it behind us."

By allowing six runs without getting an out, Falkenborg's ERA
soared from 3.68 to 11.05.

May allowed five runs, four earned, on seven hits in four
innings. He walked two and struck out one.

"I think they are definitely a beatable team if you don't make
mistakes," Blum said. "They crush mistakes. They hit all my

Several Padres were sick, including Ryan Klesko, who was
scratched from the lineup.

"But you can't take anything away from the Cubs," said second
baseman Geoff Blum, among those who have upper respiratory
infections. "We've run into a club that is swinging the bats well
and getting some good pitching."

Perez homered with one out in the first, his seventh, to extend
his hitting streak to 13 games. The Padres tied it in the bottom of
the inning on Phil Nevin's single to right.

The Cubs went ahead 4-1 in the fourth on Ramirez's leadoff
homer, his 11th, Hairston's RBI single and an error by shortstop
Khalil Greene, whose throw to third hit Dubois as he slid into the
bag, allowing him to score.

Xavier Nady, who replaced right fielder Brian Giles in the
sixth, hit a two-run homer in the sixth, his fifth, and an RBI
double in the seventh. Mark Sweeney added an RBI single in the
^Notes: Padres RHP Jake Peavy was scratched from his scheduled start
Sunday against Cubs RHP Carlos Zambrano in the series finale
because of an upper respiratory infection. Peavy will start
Wednesday night at home against Cleveland. RHP Woody Williams will
come off the disabled list Sunday to start for the Padres. ...
Nevin has an 11-game hitting streak. ... The Cubs' eight hits and
seven runs in the fifth were both season highs. The seven runs
allowed by the Padres are a season high and tie the most they've
allowed in one inning at Petco Park.